DJI Avata is a fantastic, long-awaited FPV drone packed in a small Cinewhoop frame for safer flights.
Does Avata have obstacle avoidance?
DJI Avata has no obstacle avoidance sensors. The only sensors it has are downward vision and precise hovering sensors, which will not help you avoid obstacles with this drone compared to other models.
There is much more information to cover.
In this article, we’ll explain why DJI Avata doesn’t have obstacle avoidance sensors and how this affects the flight modes of the drone.
To help, we’ve identified and reviewed the best drone courses for beginners and professionals.
What do we know about drone obstacle avoidance systems?
In the past couple of years, as technology advanced and drones became more compact, obstacle avoidance sensors were introduced and improved to help pilots fly the drones safer.
The obstacle avoidance sensors’ role is to alert the pilot not only when they get close to an object but also to stop the drone or automatically avoid it to prevent it from colliding.
Such sensors are lightweight and, in a standard drone, can be either frontal, side, backward, or spherical (complete cover).
Why does DJI Avata have no obstacle avoidance sensors?
But unfortunately, the DJI Avata does not have these sensors. It’s a disappointment for many drone pilots waiting a long time for this drone to be released.
This is because DJI FPV Drone, the first FPV drone from DJI and previous to Avata, does have frontal avoidance sensors that will help the pilot avoid colliding with obstacles when flying in normal mode.
It is likely because Avata is more budget-friendly, and not that the hardware or drone shape wouldn’t allow such sensors to be installed.
The FPV community broadly acknowledged and underlined that the lack of avoidance sensors on Avata is a significant downside that may push drone beginners away.
But you must remember that the obstacle avoidance sensors can work only while flying in normal modes, such as with the DJI FPV drone.
On the DJI FPV Drone, the obstacle avoidance sensors are inactive while flying in Sport or Manual Modes.
Therefore, following the same principle, with DJI Avata, if this drone had obstacle avoidance sensors, they would be functional only when flying in Normal Mode.
And thinking it is an FPV drone, flying in Normal Mode is not a priority to consider improving too much for both DJI and drone pilots.
What about downward sensors? What are they suitable for?
DJI Avata has the following downward sensors:
- Precise Hovering Range: 0.5-10 m
- Vision Sensor Hovering Range: 0.5-20 m
Together with the GPS module, both sensors will allow the DJI Avata to hover and land smoothly and safely.
Can a lack of obstacle avoidance affect flight performance?
No, the avoidance sensors will always have the role of avoiding obstacles, sensing them from a distance, and helping the pilot engage in safer flights.
Avoidance sensors have very little power consumption to make any real difference in DJI Avata battery life.
Therefore, obstacle avoidance or no sensors should be the same in terms of performance.
Is there any use of obstacle avoidance on an FPV drone?
As mentioned earlier, obstacle avoidance will always attempt to help the drone stop in front of an obstacle when you get too close or try to avoid it automatically.
But obstacle avoidance doesn’t have an essential role for an FPV drone that flies in Manual Mode (acro).
And if you fly only in Manual Mode, you shouldn’t worry about DJI Avata not having obstacle avoidance.
DJI Avata does have three modes like the DJI FPV drone: Normal, Sport, and Manual Modes.
It would have been perfect for many new drone pilots that wanted to start flying FPV, both with the safety of the Avata’s frame and obstacle avoidance.
Therefore, in normal circumstances, avoidance sensors on an FPV drone would be obsolete, but with how Avata is built, it could be a great addition for new drone pilots who want to fly as safely as possible.
The lack of obstacle avoidance sensors directly correlates with the returning to home function.
Although it may not affect the functionality if the drone returns at a higher altitude than the tallest structure, if otherwise had it, the DJI Avata could have a safer return-to-home operation.
For instance, I have seen situations where the Avata auto-initiated the RTH indoors and slammed into the ceiling because it doesn’t have any upward sensing system.
Can you manually add obstacle avoidance sensors to DJI Avata?
It would be an extremely complicated, if not impossible, process to add obstacle avoidance sensors to Avata.
Here we are not talking about a way to add new physical sensors, where with enough knowledge, some drone pilots may be able to do it, but about a software component and possible limitations.
DJI Avata was not software and firmware engineered to support avoidance sensors, and the internal parts will probably make any additional sensors incompatible anyway.
Therefore, to quickly answer this, no, you cannot add any obstacle avoidance sensors to Avata.
Is the DJI FPV drone better at obstacle avoidance than DJI Avata?
Yes. We mentioned before that DJI FPV has frontal obstacle avoidance sensors, unlike DJI Avata.
This makes DJI FPV safer to fly in Normal Mode than Avata and, at the same time, not.
DJI Avata takes advantage of the duct tape-shaped propeller protection style that can protect the propellers from tiny impacts.
In contrast, although the DJI FPV drone does not have this framing option, obstacle avoidance should work similarly.
Note: To make a comparison, flying DJI Avata without obstacle avoidance is safer than the DJI FPV drone with obstacle avoidance sensors.